Karen and Markus take part in an annual bird count and include their road kill project
Karen and Markus are world travellers and avid adventurers. For the second leg of their trip, they are bicycling through Europe and recording roadkill observations for the ASC Roadkill Survey for Road Bikers. For more on their trip, visit their website http://2enroute.blogspot.com/.
Every May, in recent years, I have enjoyed staying connected to Earlham College (where I got my B.A. degree) by participating in Birding Big Day. Donors pledge money per bird species and alumni from all over the world go out to try to find as many bird species as they can over graduation weekend.
This year's birding big day was a lot of fun since we are in Europe and I'm trying to learn the birds here. I don't have a handle on European birdsongs yet so nearly all of these birds were ID'd by sight. We were enroute by bicycle through the Baltics over the BBD weekend so this list encompasses northwestern Latvia through much of Estonia. The weather didn't cooperate with us (our most promising spot along the route, a migratory bird area on the Latvian coast, was completely socked in with fog when we passed through) but we still managed to see birds here and there in other places.
ASC Adventurers Steve and Katrijn have been living their dream: hiking, packrafting, and traveling the world. Last year they found rare lichen while hiking the Great Himalaya trail and most recently they are exploring South America. Along the way they have been recording obsevations for our Wildlands Biodiversity Inventory, taking photos of glaciers for Project Pressure, and once again collecting rare lichen. Steve recently wrote us an update on his adventures. To view his photos visit their blog, www.patagoniadreams.com.
We have been collecting a lot of pics for the Project Pressure project, and above you will find pics of the Glaciar O'Higgins which calves in the huge Lako O'Higgins from the Southern Patagonian Ice Cap. This viewpoint is reached by a remote trek in the southern tip of the Aysen region, in Chilean Patagonia. Only a few determined people a year reach this remote rocky outcrop mirador.
The interesting aspect you will notice in the pics, is the first night, we scrambled up in very windy weather to find the glacier without any icebergs in front of the 60m high sticking out-of-the-water , 3km wide glacier. After a stormy night, and with wind-still, sunny conditions, we hiked up again. We were astounished with the view: there was a huge shelf of a least 1 mile long that had calved off during the night forming a huge amount of ice and bergs in the lake!
We're heading into the Cordillera Blanca and Huayhuash the upcoming 7 weeks, with a lot of data collecting in the pipeline http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cordillera_Blanca. In July we're heading back to Colombia, to explore the Cocuy range http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parque_nacional_natural_El_Cocuy.
We had found a good sample for the lichen project on a high ridge in the San Lorenzo massif (Aysen, Chile), but it was confiscated at the Buenos Aires airport. I had to do quite some explaining there, but got away with it, but without the sample. They needed a letter of clarification for the project, so they didn't believe me, they thought i was smuggling!
We update our website, so please have a look. => http://patagoniandreams.com/
Saludos from Huaraz, Peru.
Steve and Katrijn
Human Powered Adventure Science from Reno to Prudhoe Bay
Adam Bradley is an avid adventure athlete with a speed record of the PCT in 2009 and has traveled over 20,000 miles on foot and 13,000 river miles on his quest for human powered adventures. Adam is currently biking from his front door in Reno, NV to Prudhoe Bay, AK and back. Along his journey he will be recording observations of road kill for the ASC Road Kill Survey for Road Bikers. Adam's contribution to this project will help researchers identify areas with high animal/vehicle interactions along the stretches of road he travels. Below is an excerpt from his blog, Never Came Back, explaining how ASC will fit into his human powered trip
Mary Catherine O'Connor of Outside Magazine kindly put me in touch with another NGO: Scientists and Adventurers for Conservation. This group I highly recommend to any outdoors aficionado as we all as outdoors people may contribute to science through our observations out in the wild. There are several ongoing studies on their website that one may take part in by simply creating an account and uploading the locations of their observations. One that caught my eye for being a perfect fit for my bicycle leg of the Tippy Top Tour is the road kill study. Not only do they want data collected on road kill that is observed along my route, but also the waypoints of all the live animals I observe. Cool thing about that is when I return they will also be able to use my uploaded data from last years BLC to Bering Sea adventure. This data is then used with regards to recommendations for wildlife corridors along busy highways where collision with animals may be avoided.
Paul Gamche is exploring new rivers in his kayak and collecting beetles for ASC
ASC Adventurer Paul Gamache is a professional white water kayaker who has explored waterways around the world. His latest adventure is in Cameroon, one of the least explored countries for white water paddling. Paul has spent the last few months scouting rivers and making first descents. Along the way he has also been collecting beetles for the ASC World Wide Beetle project. Read more about Paul's kayaking expedition at http://www.chutesducameroun.com.
I left Arcata, California in January of 2013 and headed to Cameroon, West Africa in search of whitewater. As I was packing my bags I received an email from my friend Haven Livingston. She had just had written an article for International Rivers on “Citizen Science” and went on to tell me about the work ASC was doing.
Excited about adding value to the kayaking expedition as well as helping out others with their research, I filled out the info request on the ASC website. Within a short time ASC had connected my exploratory whitewater kayaking expedition with a group of scientists who were looking to study beetle specimens from the area. After a Skype meeting with ASC in the U.S. and a scientist currently in Kenya, I started collecting beetles.
ASC Adventurer Veronique Verhoeven spent the winter traveling through Antarctica as the doctor aboard a ship. During her travels she collected microbe samples for the High Altitude Microbe project and recorded whale observations for two ASC science projects. The ship sailed to the Ross Sea near Mc Murdo Base. The crew took a helicopter to explore the Dry Valleys. The permits for scientists and visitors are very strict and Veronique is happy to share these photos from such a remote place.
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